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Funeral Poems | Memorial Poems ..
"And here may be the best place to note after Dr Phelps that the 'whole atmosphere of Collins's Ode is similar to that of the Elegy. Cf. especially stanza 10,
''And hamlets brown, and dim-discovered spires,Dr Phelps notes also that Joseph Warton's verses contain some of Gray's pictures, and something of the same train of thought: e.g.:
And hears their simple bell, and marks o'er all
Thy dewy fingers draw
The gradual dusky veil.'' '
''Hail, meek-eyed maiden, clad in sober grey,add:
Whose soft approach the weary woodman loves,
As homeward bent to kiss his prattling babes
Jocund he whistles through the twilight groves.''
''Now every Passion sleeps; desponding Love,The latter stanza might well be the form in embryo of the four rejected stanzas quoted infra, n. on . Dr Phelps remarks that ''the scenery as well as the meditations of the Elegy were by no means original: they simply established more firmly literary fashions which were already becoming familiar.''
And pining Envy, ever-restless Pride;
A holy calm creeps o'er my peaceful soul,
Anger and mad Ambition's storms subside.''
And certainly if the opening stanzas of the Elegy as we now have them were written as early as 1742, their composition was in no way affected by the poems of Warton and Collins; the same must be said even if the 'autumnal verses' of the letter of Sept. 11, 1746, were the Elegy. The spirit of gentle melancholy was in the air; and in 1746 and 1747 found in three young poets, Collins, Joseph Warton and Thomas Warton, that voice to the world at large which is found again in Gray in 1750. For in 1747 Thomas Warton published anonymously these lines, which he had written in his 17th year (1745):
''Beneath yon ruin'd abbey's moss-grown pilewhere resemblance to the Elegy is closest of all.
Oft let me sit, at twilight hour of eve
Where thro' some western window the pale moon
Pours her long-levell'd rule of streaming light;
While sullen sacred silence reigns around,
Save the lone screech-owl's note, who builds his bow'r
Amid the mould'ring caverns dark and damp,
Or the calm breeze, that rustles in the leaves
Of flaunting ivy, that with mantle green
Invests some wasted tow'r:''
Between these three poets communication of ideas was probable; but at this date even Thomas Warton, with whom he afterwards corresponded, was an absolute stranger to Gray. And Gray is so far from feeling that in any of these there were 'kindred spirits' who might 'enquire his fate' that he writes, Dec. 27, 1746:
'Have you seen the Works of two young Authors, a Mr Warton and a Mr Collins, both Writers of Odes? it is odd enough, but each is the half of a considerable Man, and one the counterpart of the other. The first has but little invention, very poetical choice of Expression, and a good Ear, the second a fine fancy, model'd upon the Antique, a bad Ear, great variety of Words, and Images with no choice at all. They both deserve to last some Years, but will not.'
So little are men conscious of that 'stream of tendency' on which they themselves are borne."
Christian Poem About Memories,Encouragement Poem
Hi, I am a new Eagle Scout and my grandfather, my father, and my uncle served in the navy and I feel I should follow in the family tradition; I saw this movie and I loved the ending poem, and this poem made me make a veterans memorial in a park for my Eagle Scout project. Thank you for your service.
Memory Poems - Poems and Quotes for Scrapbookers
"G[ray]. wrote to Walpole, 3 March 1751 (Corresp i 344): 'I humbly propose, for the benefit of Mr. Dodsley and his matrons, that take awake for a verb, that they should read asleep, and all will be right.' If G. was referring to the comma which appeared after 'Awake', the fault was his own (see his letter to Walpole of 11 Feb. above). It was removed in ed 3.
In 1768 G. acknowledged as the source of this line Petrarch's Sonnet 169 (more usually numbered 170), which he himself had earlier translated into Latin (see p. 309): Ch'i veggio nel pensier, dolce mio fuoco, / Fredda una lingua, & due begli occhi chiusi / Rimaner doppa noi pien di faville (For I see in my thoughts, my sweet fire, one cold tongue and two beautiful closed eyes will remain full of sparks after our death). But there are other parallels with G.'s image and thought: e.g. Lucretius iv 925-6: Quippe ubi nulla latens animai pars remaneret / in membris, cinere ut multa latet obrutus ignis (Since, if no part of the spirit were left hidden in the limbs, like fire covered in a heap of ashes); Ovid, Tristia III iii 81-4: Tu tamen extincto feralia munera semper / deque tuis lacrimis umida serta dato. / quamvis in cineres corpus mutaverit ignis, / sentiet officium maesta favilla pium (Yet do you ever give to the dead the funeral offerings and garlands moist with your own tears. Although the fire change my body to ashes, the sorrowing dust shall feel the pious care); Propertius, Elegies II xiii 42: Non nihil ad verum conscia terra sapit (Not at all unconscious and witless of the truth are the ashes of man: i.e. of the way his memory is regarded after death); Ausonius, Parentalia, Praefatio 11-12: Gaudent compositi cineres sua nomina dici: / frontibus hoc scriptis et monumenta iubent (Our dead ones laid to rest rejoice to hear their names: and thus even the lettered stones above their graves would have us do). Arthur Johnston, Selected Poems of Gray and Collins (1967) p. 46, cites the translation of Euripides, Bacchae 8, in the life of Solon in Plutarch's Lives (1683) vol i: 'Still in their embers living the strong fire'. See also Young, Night Thoughts i 105-7: 'Why wanders wretched Thought their tombs around, / In infidel Distress? Are Angels there? / Slumbers, rak'd up in dust, Etherial fire?' The version of the line which appeared in edd 1-7 echoes Pope, Eloisa to Abelard 54: 'Warm from the soul, and faithful to its fires'."
How to Memorize a Poem: A Poetic Step-by-Step
"Here again want of lucidity is the one defect in a beautiful stanza. Gray seems to mean 'who ever was so much a prey to dumb Forgetfulness as to resign life and its possibilities of joy and sorrow without some regret?' But not only is it patent that millions have been so much a prey to the 'second childishness and mere oblivion' of age that they have passed away without the power to feel regret, but the whole sequence of thought shows that this cannot be Gray's meaning. He uses 'prey' in a prospective sense, the destined prey; accordingly Munro translates
Quis subiturus enim Lethaea silentia &c.It is perhaps Gray's classicism which betrays him here, for Horace, who has sometimes the same sort of obscurity due to condensation, has just this anticipatory use when he says (Odes, II. 3. 21 sq.) that it makes no difference whether as rich and high-born or poor and low-born you linger out life's little day, the victim of merciless Orcus; i.e. certain in either case to become so at last.
Again, Gray seems to be shaping anew the question in Paradise Lost (II. 146 sq.):
''For who would lose,and when he speaks of 'this pleasing anxious being' and 'the warm precincts of the cheerful day,' he may be supposed to express the same horror of the annihilation of thought, the same dread of eternal darkness. Yet, in the main, the terror of which Gray speaks is the forgetfulness of the dead by the living. In this and the following stanza the true significance of the 'frail memorials' is explained. Though men are destined to oblivion they crave to be remembered, as they have craved for human support and affection in their last hours; it is thus that 'even from the tomb the voice of nature cries.' In fact whilst we find the form and some of the accessories of Gray's thought in Milton, we find the substance of it rather in Homer, Virgil and Dante, who give us the same voice of nature as heard from the further shore; as when the spirits say to Dante, Inferno, xvi. 85 sq.:
Though full of pain, this intellectual being,
These thoughts that wander through eternity,
To perish rather, swallowed up and lost
In the wide womb of uncreated Night,
Devoid of sense and motion?''
''if thou escape this darksome clime
Returning to behold the radiant stars,
See that of us thou speak amongst mankind'' "